A very interesting plant for the shady garden, Osmunda claytoniana (Interrupted Fern) is a charming deciduous fern with showy, lance-shaped, divided, pale green sterile fronds surrounding erect, central fertile fronds. The fertile fronds are interrupted in the middle by brown leaflets (spore-bearing pinnae) which typically fall off in mid summer, thus giving this distinctive fern its common name. Interrupted Fern is one of the first ferns to begin growth in spring. The oldest known fossil record of any living fern in the world is over 200 million years old!
Low maintenance, pest and disease free, Interrupted Fern is a great asset for very wet sites!
- Clump-forming, it easily grows in a spreading-vase shape, up to 2-3 ft. tall and wide (60-90 cm). May reach up to 5 ft. (150 cm) if even moisture is provided.
- A part shade to full shade lover, it is best grown in rich, consistently moist, acidic, well-drained soils. Do not allow the soil to dry out. Will grow in full sun if given plenty of moisture.
- This plant is a great choice for shady beds, borders, underplanting of roses and shrubs, cottage gardens, woodlands or along streams, ponds or water gardens. Combines beautifully with Azaleas, Astilbes, Hostas or Primulas.
- Rabbit, deer, clay & wet soil tolerant!
- Dead or damaged fronds may be removed as necessary.
- Propagate by sowing spores as soon as ripe or by division in early spring or autumn
- Native to Eastern Asia, Eastern United States and Eastern Canada.
Ferns come in an amazing array of texture, color, sizes and shapes. Easy to grow and quite versatile, they add beauty to almost any spot in the garden. While most ferns enjoy part shade or dappled sunlight, there are many which will also perform well in sunny locations, provided they get enough water. Most ferns are slow growing and may take several years to reach their mature size. Requiring minimal maintenance throughout the year, they offer gardeners plenty of attractive planting options!